Friday 4 November 2016

My Husband's Son - Deborah O'Connor

Heidi and Jason aren't like other couples. Six years ago, Heidi's daughter was murdered. A year later, Jason's son Barney disappeared. Their shared loss brought them together.

By chance, Heidi meets a boy she's certain is her husband's long-missing son - but Jason is equally convinced it's not him.

Is Heidi mad? Or is Jason hiding something? And can their fragile marriage survive Heidi's search for the truth . . .

What did I think?

I had no idea before I started this book that it was set in my native North East.  It always takes the reading of such books to another level when the area is familiar to you and you don't need to imagine the scene.  It left my imagination free to run wild on the plot so I had an absolute whale of a time reading My Husband's Son.

Heidi and Jason met at a conference after sharing the worst kind of experience imaginable for a parent: they both have missing children.  Heidi's daughter, Lauren, went missing and was later found murdered whereas Jason's son, Barney, has never been found so Jason still has hope.  Heidi moved to the North East when she married Jason and it is on a visit to a local off-licence in Gateshead that she notices a boy who she thinks resembles Barney.  She encourages Jason to visit the off-licence to take a look and he says it isn't his son.  Jason is convinced that he has such a close bond with Barney that he will know him immediately when they are reunited. Heidi, however, cannot get this boy out of her head and takes increasing risks to find out more about him.  How far is she willing to go to find out if this boy is her husband's son?

What a cracking read.  One minute I was on Jason's side, thinking Heidi needed to drop this madness then I was thinking, what if Heidi is right?  Wouldn't a parent explore every avenue and investigate every possibility before disregarding a possible sighting of their missing child?   Why would Heidi be convinced when Jason wasn't?  Is she clutching at all straws as there is no hope for her daughter? Does Jason have something to hide and what exactly is he relationship with his ex-wife?  What on earth is going on in Heidi's head for her to take such unnecessary risks?  There were so many questions going round and round in my head that I positively tore through the pages in search of the answers.

I was completely unprepared for the amazing ending and had to stay up quite late to finish it as I couldn't have put this book down if my life depended on it.  A superb debut by Deborah O'Connor and a well deserved 5 out of 5 from me for My Husband's Son.  If you like books that make you question everything you are reading, then this one is most definitely for you!

I chose to read this ARC and all opinions in this review are my own and completely unbiased.

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